Outsourcing for independent publishers or Indie Authors can be a good thing, because you can’t always do everything on your own. You also want to save time and costs.
Get Clear on Your Goals
You need to get clear on what you want to achieve, when you are looking to outsource aspects of your work, such as the editing, design and formatting. If, for example, you are aiming for a bestseller book, your goals should align accordingly. So, if you are on a tight budget, it doesn’t tie in with your goals if you choose to outsource the book editing to someone who may not give you high quality, even if he/she charges significantly less. Although you want to save on costs, remember your goal is to have a bestselling book, so don’t sacrifice on quality.
Five Star Reviews
Going further on the point of quality, beware of who you choose to do business with. There are freelance services available, where various skilled people are competing with each other to offer the same services. Each person is keen on getting positive reviews in order to keep ahead of the competition. Naturally, you want a bestselling book, so you choose the person with 300 five star reviews, over the person with two five star reviews, and over the person with 300 four star reviews. But everyone wants five star reviews.
It’s All About the Money
Now this is where things get tricky, because five star reviews equals higher demand and more money for that five star rated individuall. Some persons can keep up with this higher demand and supply their customers with continued quality service and low costs. But what happens when they can’t or don’t.
A sample scenario is where you solicit a five star rated individual, who then delivers your work a day or two late, and communicated poorly throughout the process. You like the end product, but you take away points for the poor communication and late delivery. You give him a rating of 4.8 and you provide a nice written feedback. He writes you with surprise, expressing concern that you didn’t like his work and that he receives mostly five star reviews. From his point of view you have essentially put his income at risk.
Keep your goals in mind and do not compromise. If you are on a timeline to meet your goal, then he has now set you back by a day or two. Maybe you could forgive the timing, but due to the limited communication, you didn’t know what was happening. Independent publishers are usually keen on having control over the process, so good communication is important. Communication is also vital because if there are issues or questions, these can get addressed early. If you are dealing with tardiness in addition to poor communication, then you will be set back with your goals even further.
You do have good help available at affordable costs, but you want to be clear on your goals, and beware of what factors you are up against. Ensure that the service you receive matches with what you want.